Swordsman is a great class to play. You can dps and solo pretty well, so leveling is no problem. You can do a tank build, which is crucial for groups, dungeons, and boss fights. You can also try out a full DPS build, which takes a lot of time / dedication / gear / cards / etc, but is very fun as well.
I'll start out by explaining the different stats, skills, equipment, cards, etc, and finish up explaining different builds. I don't really play a tank knight build, so if you are looking for in-depth tank knight build information, I would refer you to Souken's Knight guide.
NOTE: certain parts of this guide were not updated for Valder - there are better pets now, probably better cards, and there is better gear. So any time I mention specific equipment, the level cap has been increased now and there is probably something better. However, I think you will find much of the information in this guide is just general help / etc, and is still relevant. I'll update the guide as soon as I get a chance; I don't play as much as I used to.
Here are what the different stats give you (this is just an explanation; I will go more into detail about builds and stuff later).
- STR / Strength (offensive stat)
- Increases your attack power (ATK). The amount per STR varies, it seems to be 3 or 4 attack per 1 str the last time I checked.
- Increases critical hit rate. It seems to be about 1% crit rate per 10 STR.
- AGI / Agility (offensive stat)
- Increases your attack speed (ASPD). The amount per AGI varies, but it's generally something like 0.5 - 1 aspd per AGI
- Increases your minimum attack damage. Your minimum hit will be stronger, and deal higher damage more consistently.
- VIT / Vitality (defensive stat)
- Increases your health. Generally 5-10 hp per VIT, but depends.
- Reduces physical damage taken (known as "vit" or soft def). This reduction is different from armor DEF.
- SPR / Spirit (defensive stat)
Increases your magic defense
Increases fear resistance
Increases SP regen, about +1 SP / 10 seconds per 5 spirit.
INT is not listed, because you do not need INT as a Swordsman/Knight. You don't need max SP. You don't need MATK.
- HP Recovery - Passive, Recover a set amount of HP, plus a bonus added by your Max HP, once every 10 seconds. This also increases the effectiveness of HP healing items.
- HP Recovery is nice at lower levels as a swordsman. At level 10, it provides 50 HP every 10 seconds, plus a bonus depending on your max health. This recovery can really add up.
- At level 10 it appears to make your health potions heal for about 50% more - so your potions are much more effective.
- At higher levels, it is not as useful unless you use a lot of potions. Monsters hit for much harder and you will want to spend your points on other skills, and rely on potions and priests for healing.
- Sword Mastery - Passive, Increase the Attack Strength of One-handed Swords. Each skill level adds 2 Attack Speed.
- Increases ATK and ASPD for 1-Handed Swords.
- Recommended as swordsman, and 1-Handed knight.
- Required level 3 for 2H Sword Mastery
- Shield Training - Passive, Increase Dodge and Perfect Dodge Rates while equipped with a Shield.
Recommended for 1 hand tank knight. Not really recommended for swordsman. See my leveling build for swordsman below.
Two Hand Mastery - Passive, Increase the Attack Strength of Two-handed Sword
Increases attack when using a 2 handed sword.
Recommended for 2H damage builds.
Bash - Active, Bash an enemy with mighty force. As the skill's level increases, so does your Physical Attack Strength and your chance of Stunning the target (2.5 sec).
Your main attack. Every swordsman should have this.
Fatal Blow - Active, usable after Bash. Deals damage and has a chance to reduce enemy DEF by 30%.
Every swordsman should have this. â€‹
Use Fatal Blow after Bash - it takes 0 SP, does good damage, and can reduce enemy DEF.
Provoke - Active. Taunts an enemy to attack you. Increases enemy ATK, decreases enemy DEF.
â€‹Provoke is good and bad. It is a ranged attack, and it reduces the enemy's DEF. However, it also increases the enemies ATK. So you will hit the monster harder, but they will also hit you harder.
Level 1 Provoke reduces enemy def by about 3%, and does NOT increase the enemies ATK. I would recommend 1 point in provoke at the very minimum, but it is not required.
It is useful for pulling one monster out of a bunch.
It is great for 2 handed berserker DPS builds.
It is great if you have heals, and you want to kill faster, and getting hit a little harder doesn't matter.
It is great if you have high defense, and getting hit a little harder doesn't matter.
Charge - Active. Charges at an enemy, dealing damage and an 80% chance of slowing the enemies movement.
Utility skill for PvE, charge to attack a monster from a distance.
This is more of a PVP skill. If you max Charge to level 5, it only has a 3 second cool down.
It's not really for doing damage. At level 5, it does 50% damage of a normal hit.
Endure - Passive, gives MDEF. [Knight job skill]
â€‹Recommended for Tank Knight builds. Magic defense is required for bosses with hard hitting magic. In the current version of RO:VU, there is really only one boss that hits hard (Owl Duke, and Chico Choco monsters).
40 MDEF at level 10
Shield Mastery - Active, Return a certain amount of damage to your attacker while improving the basic Defense of your armor. This skill's effect lasts for 200 seconds. Requires a Shield. [Knight job skill]
Recommended for Tank Knight builds.
Reflects 3% damage at level 10
Two Hand Quicken - Active, Wield a Two-handed Sword with 60 more Attack Speed and an enhanced Critical Rate. This skill's effect is canceled immediately upon taking off the Two-handed Sword. [Knight job skill]
- This skill is a MUST HAVE for 2 handed knight builds. If you are a 2H knight, you need this maxed, no excuses. I realize it gives 60 ASPD at level 1, but 28% critical is a LOT.
Increases ASPD by 60 at level 1 (does not change, flat 60 aspd regardless of skill level)
Increases CRIT by 28% at level 10
Magnum Break - Active, A powerful area-effective skill that inflicts Fire damage on its target and surrounding enemies on 3x3 pixels. [Knight job skill]
â€‹Knight's Fire Elemental AoE attack
Does a lot of damage at level 10. It's nice for killing multiple monsters.
You can kind of kite mobs around and kill them with Magnum Break if you are quick on your feet.
Very useful, recommended if you often fight multiple monsters at once.
I'd recommend either maxing it to 10, or not having it at all.
Bowling Bash - Active, Area of effect attack. 2 handed sword required.
Swordsman AoE attack
Level 5 Bowling Bash hits for +30% ATK bonus. Level 10 Magnum Break hits for +200% attack bonus. You do the math.
If for some reason you wanted a pure AoE build, then okay sure, get 5 bowling bash with 10 magnum break and go for it. I hope you're using a 2 hander.
How to Choose Equipment
Here are the basics of equipment for swordsman/knight. I am not talking about any specific items or anything here. This is just a general overview of how to choose equipment for your character.
- Get a weapon with the highest Attack available.
- Use a 1 handed sword if you are using a shield.
- Use a 2 handed sword if you are a DPS build.
- Upgrade your weapon to +4 ALWAYS. Over-upgrade if you have Sup. Forging Tools (and a nice weapon you plan on using for a long time).
- Use a shield if you are using a 1 handed sword.
- Shield is basically considered armor. Everything that applies to armor applies to your shield - see below.
- Determine what element monsters you are going to be fighting primarily. Put 3 elemental resistance cards into your shield for that element. (example: If you are fighting Golems, Thorn Mukas, etc, socket three Earth Resist cards)
- Have multiple shields with different elemental resistances. Use them accordingly.
- Get armor with the highest DEF and MDEF available.
- If you're a DPS build, you may want to prioritize offensive stats (STR, AGI, CRIT) and possibly sacrifice some DEF.
- Upgrade your equipment to +4 ALWAYS. Upgrade more if you have Sup. Forging Tools.
Add cards to your equipment for bonuses. Each different item "slot" (armor, head, shoulders, etc) has different cards that you can add. In other words, cards are slot specific - there are some cards for head, some for armor, etc.
- Generally speaking, if you have garbage armor that you are going to replace (while leveling as swordsman, etc) you can get budget / bang for your buck cards.
- If you get a REALLY NICE piece of equipment, do not put shitty cards in it. You can actually REDUCE the value of nice equipment by ruining it with shitty cards.
Here are types of cards recommended as a swordsman/knight:
- + ATK (Dullahan, Drake)
- + Elemental Damage %
- + DEF (rare, I think they exist)
- + Elemental Resistance %
- + HP (+360 or +460 hp Goblin are the best atm)
- For pure offensive, there are also Elemental Damage % cards to helm (rare)
- + MDEF Cards (Rideword) - mdef probably better than DEF. Magic hits much harder than normal attacks.
- + DEF Cards (Bloody Murderer are the best atm, +9 DEF)
- Offensive: + ASPD Cards (+6 or +7 ASPD wraith or Baphomet)
- Defensive: + DEF (I think you can get +6 DEF) or + FLEE (Desert Wolf S +4% flee)
- + HP Cards (Alice +360 HP, Dark Lord +400 HP)
- Pure Offensive Build: + 4% Crit cards (Detar's Child). I think there are ASPD shoe cards maybe. There are also elemental damage % cards to shoes (rare)
- Defensive: + HP Goblin S cards (rare)
- Offensive: + CRIT (there are +2, +4, +6 crit cards) and + ASPD (+6 aspd cards).
- Budget / crappy accessory - + Max SP
Just remember - don't put crappy cards in good gear. Take your time to get good cards for good gear.
Swordsman Leveling Build
This build is for leveling your swordsman up to knight. Since you get Time Capsule (restat) and Flash Stick (reskill) through quests, and an additional Flash Stick upon turning into a Knight, you should use a swordsman build that is built to level.
Swordsman Leveling Stats (ratio):
- 2 STR
- 1 VIT
I recommend raising your vit first. VIT adds soft DEF, which basically reduces all the damage you receive by however much VIT you have. It's the most effective at low levels, when monsters hit for lower amounts and your soft DEF from your VIT can basically absorb all the damage and you only get hit for 1. I suggest raising your vit up to about 10 or 15, then getting your STR up to about the same amount, then getting VIT a bit further to about 25 or so, then just go all out into STR. Stay at about 2 STR per 1 VIT throughout your Swordsman days.
For skills, I recommend getting Bash to level 3, then getting 1 point into Fatal Blow. That's your main combo. After that, it depends on what you want to do. Personally, if I was starting a new character I'd get Increase HP Recovery up because it reduces downtime and your pots heal for more, and then after getting HP Recovery up to 5 - 7 or so, finish leveling Bash up and FB up, then finish HP recovery, then get sword mastery if you are 1 handed. Of course if you are going 2 handed, then get 2 hand mastery. However personally I recommend you just use a 1hander with shield as a swordsman.
By the time you get to level 38 / 35, I recommend you have these skills:
Swordsman Leveling Skills
- 10 Bash
- 5 Fatal Blow
- 10 Increase HP Recovery
- 10 Sword Mastery (if using 1 hand)
Swordsman Leveling Equipment
For equipment, you're obviously just leveling and all your gear is going to be temporary anyways. Just get the best stuff you can find. Look on the Auction House for VS Gear (search for "vs"). People craft VS gear over and over and over in attempts to create VVS and VVVS gear, so there is often VS gear on the auction house for extremely cheap. For example, you can find VS Pauldrons, VS Blue Boots, etc, for basically less than it costs to craft.
For your weapon, I recommend just getting whatever VS weapons might be available on the AH. Upgrade them if possible, if you use the Ruby Shop it's pretty inexpensive to upgrade a weapon to +4 without any worry of breaking the weapon. It doesn't make sense to upgrade your weapon any further since it's just a temporary weapon. Obviously don't just upgrade any weapon; shop around for a nice VS weapon for your level and upgrade that to +4 if you'll be using it for a while. Doppleganger drops a pretty nice rank 4 saber that has HP Absorption and SP absorption on it.
Two Handed Build
Two handed knight is all about damage - attack power, attack speed, critical hit rate. The best defense is a good offense, right? This build wrecks in PVP duels because critical hits go straight through defense. High damage and attack speed paired with +HP Absorb items means you can pretty much skip the VIT and go full STR / AGI if you want. That's what I do, if I wanted to tank I would be a tank spec, so I get AGI for maximum ASPD and damage. Your damage will be so high that you can mitigate a lot of damage with 7% or 9% HP absorb. This is the build I am currently using on my knight. Be warned though, the equipment is expensive... this is a build to slowly work towards. It doesn't work without the appropriate gear.
For ALL OUT DAMAGE:
- 6 STR
- 4 AGI
STR a bit higher than AGI - for example, 60 str and 43 AGI, or something liek that. Once your attack speed gets up to about 200 with potions and AGI up, I consider it "good enough" and would rather have strength. Alternatively, you can switch the AGI for VIT for more HP and defense, however your attack speed will be lower and you won't do as much damage.
For a hybrid, more sturdy build - get VIT, with a little AGI:
- 5 STR
- 4 VIT
- 3 AGI
There are a lot of variations you can do, but basically by level 48 you want like 50-60 STR, and either VIT or AGI or both.
- 3 Sword Mastery
- 10 Two Handed Sword Mastery
- 10 Bash
- 5 Fatal Blow
- 10 Two Hand Quicken
- You will have either 2 points, or 7 points if you cash shop 5 skill points. I put mine into Provoke, you may want to do something else - Magnum Break, HP Recovery, whatever you want. For maximum damage, I have 7 in Provoke because it is nice for pulling, and it reduces the enemies defense.
- Greatsword of the Trial S (330 coin sword) - 3% HP Absorb, 2% Crit, slot with Drake +15 ATK cards
- VVVS Pauldrons - three 7ASPD cards
- VVVS Boots - you can get either +340 HP, or personally i have three +4 crit detar's child cards for 12% crit on boots
- 2x VVVS Vesper Core or VVS Glove - you need these for the 2% HP absorb. Put +6 crit cards and +6 ASPD cards in your accessories.
- VVS Full Plate - have fun crafting, lol get +9 DEF Bloody Murderer Cards, or whatever you want
- Fire Dragon Helm - really the only thing I know of with stats that we want. For cards, 480 HP - good luck getting those cards...
There might be better items for each slot but that's what I'm using at the moment. I know there are boots you can get from 330 coins, as well as armor and etc, but this stuff is pretty good.
Here's a video of me using this build - 657 ATK, 189 DEF, 70 CRIT, 195 ASPD. 54+13 STR, 50+22 AGI
To be honest, I have not played a tank build much. I generally play short sessions so I don't have much time to find groups and stuff. Please see souken's guide for good information, he knows what he's talking about: Souken's Tank Knight guide.
Edited by Sloppy, 25 June 2013 - 10:41 PM.
added knight build, video of dps knight